Matt Bevin on Wall Street: Before and after

02/11/2014 07:20 PM

As a U.S. Senate candidate, Republican Matt Bevin says there’s no such thing as “too big to fail” for banks, that the federal government engaged in a “shake down” of JP Morgan Chase and that Wall Street is already regulated enough.

As the head of investment firm in 2008, Bevin signed off on different type of views.

According to Politico , Bevin was in support of the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, as well as the government takeover of troubled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

But before that was reported, cn|2’s Ryan Alessi asked Bevin after the Spencer County Republican Lincoln Day Dinner Friday about his views about Wall Street and the bank bailout, which he has criticized U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell for supporting.

Since the bailout, some Senators, including Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren, have warned that some of the banks have become “too big to fail.” Bevin said there’s no such thing.

“To say that something is too big to fail is to fly in the face of everything that made this nation great, it’s to fly in the face of of the best things about a free market economy,” Bevin told Pure Politics Friday. “Too big to fail basically means you can do whatever you want and don’t worry, we got your back…Too big to fail is a faulty premise.”

Last month, JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon — one of the key bank executives involved in the 2008 bailouts — received 74 percent increase in compensation for 2013. The bank board’s approval of the raise brought Dimon’s pay for 2013 to about $20 million dollars.

Dimon’s increase came after the bank agreed to pay $23 billion in regulatory and settlement fees last year related to a major trading scandal. Bevin called the fine a “shake down” by the federal government.

“They were forced by the same government who turned around and sued them and fined them, they were forced by that government to absorb those faulty companies, they were forced by the government as a part of this ‘too big to fail’ where our government decided they were gonna tell which banks were gonna absorb which other banks and who was gonna be the winner and who was gonna be the loser,” Bevin said.

Meanwhile, Wall Street remains on the hot seat with regulators and with key federal lawmakers. Last week, another high-profile trader, former S.A.C. Capital portfolio manager Mathew Martoma, was found guilty in federal court.

When asked whether he thinks more regulations or law changes are needed, Bevin said he knows from personal experience that Wall Street is already one of the most regulated financial industry in the country.

“I’ve started a 40-act RIA, I’ve started a mutual fund company from scratch, I understand exactly what’s involved in these companies, I ran those companies as CEO for years, Bevin said. “There is a need for legislation, there is plenty of regulation already but the fact is there may be opportunities where we could tighten things up.”

About Pure Politics

Pure Politics airs Monday through Friday at 7 p.m. ET and again at 11:30 p.m. ET in all of cn|2's Kentucky markets. The program features political analysis and news, as well as interviews with officials, candidates, policy makers and political observers.

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